Mushroom Growing Tips

SUBSTRATES: Mix recipes by hand or in a cement mixer for larger amounts. Soak overnight.

BAGS: Unicorn bags type B filters allow for faster and more complete colonisation than A filters but are more prone to contamination, particularly for species which take longer to colonise such as shiitake.

BAG FILLING: Roll down the top of bag so you dont get sub on the tops. Tap down, but don’t compress.

AUTOCLAVING SUBSTRATE BAGS: Autoclave for 4 hours at 121c. For end of autoclaving, put a clean piece of cloth/paper, soaked with 70 % alcohol over the cooker outlet during the cooling process to filter the air streaming into the pot while pressure equalisation. Ideally, store the substrates in the refrigerator (2-4°C) and use them within 4 weeks. 

GRAIN SOAKING AND AUTOCLAVING: Put grains in water and boil for 20 minutes. Drain and allow to steam cool. Leave overnight for any thermotolerant spores to germinate. Autoclave for 6 hours – DO NOT overload the autoclave as air needs to get around the bags. Ideally, store the substrates in the refrigerator (2-4°C) and use them within 4 weeks. 

SPWANING FRUITING BAGS: For best results, add around 20% of the final weight of bags in grain spawn (e.g. 2,500g*0.2 = 500g of grain spawn).

SPAWN RUN: Put bags at 25c with some fresh air exchange until fully white and firm. For shiitake, leave until the bags have gone dark brown.

ADD TO GROW ROOM: For shiitake, remove bags completely and flip blocks over when moving to grow room – the extra moisture at the bottom of bags is more conducive to mushroom production. For oysters cut a 3 inch X towards the bottom of the bags for mushrooms to fruit from. For King oysters cut top off bag about 2 inches above the level of the substrate and add vermiculite casing layer.

GROW ROOM CONDITIONS: 17-18c, plenty of fresh air exchange, >90 humidity.

Overall timings for our 5 mushrooms

Data taken from Paul Stamets’ book ‘Growing Gourmet Mushrooms’

All require a cold snap. We are collecting to data to check how necessary this is for our strains.

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